Officially known as Specimen 24-2304-1030-F, Cri is a modern-age slave owned and raised by the Egli Mineral Resources Corporation.
Since the age of four, she has been perpetually surveilled by a technique known as 'embedded surveillance'. A carbon-based, nanotech tracking device is wrapped around the main artery of her neck. It constantly monitors her location and records every word she speaks.
Cri was born with an exceptional genetic profile and is one of the fortunate few in the Egli slave class who will rise in status from a Menial to a Breeder.
Most girls envy Cri's Breeder status, but Cri has no interest in the privileged life it offers. She craves freedom and is willing to die for it. Now that her breeding obligations have come due, she can’t put off her escape any longer.
A corporate-owned continent.
Egli is a small continent on a cloudy, stormy world roiling in the technological treacheries of its post-digital Nano Age, as Earth too soon will.
Egli is rich in minerals, precious stones, medicine mosses, and a crystalline substance once used for fuel. For thousands of years this land has been mined with slave labor.
The continent of Egli has no countries. It is made up of four sectors, each governed by a council of majority landowners. The largest of these sectors is owned and run by the Egli Mineral Resources Corporation. It is here where Cri was born and where her story begins.
The Nano Age.
The good, the bad, and the egli.
Ready or not (mostly not), Earth is plunging into the Nano Age.
It will be an amazing, dangerous age of
ubiquitous (everywhere) video surveillance
achieved by techniques ranging from undectable video cameras built into architectural structures to insect-size, insect-shaped video bots that can follow a selected target or hover in any penetrable GPS location
near future militaries will use GPS-guided bullets, full-body robotic exoskeleton suits, robotic soldiers, mini nukes, invisible surveillance devices, invisibility cloaking, incredibly devastating types of chemical and biological weapons, and bug-sized assassination robots that can seek out and inject a human target with deadly poison
thought-controlled computers and objects
invisibility cloaking using metamaterials with a negative refractive index
high-density data storage and data aggregation
where every bit and byte of information ever collected about any one thing or person is accumulated for the purpose of profiling, sharing or selling
once available only on the black market or among corporate entities, soon anyone will be able to buy, trade, or sell aggregated data and other collectible information, even so-called 'private' or 'classified' information
The Treacheries of Technology
In any age, emerging technologies pose threats as well as benefits. The more sophisticated the technology, the greater the threat. Some threats are unintentional; others are not.
Since the times of Da Vinci, much of the development of cutting-edge technology has been motivated by a lust for military advantage and the dominance of power — power over nature, power over information, power over people.
Earth is entering the Nano Age as a world still steeped in war. Nano weaponry will be horrific because of its unprecedented precision, invisibility, portability, and smallness.
Book 1 in the Cri of Egli series
A searing YA solarpunk/dystopian novel about modern-age slavery, ubiquitious surveillance, the bounds of freedom, and the bonds of love.
Cri was born into slavery on the corporate-owned continent of Egli—a fate of birth she would wish upon no one, not even those who own and rule her.
Cri and the boy she loves dream of freedom, but making their escape from the Worker Compound of Mining Installation #24 won't be easy. The tracking nodule embedded in their necks monitors their movement and records their every word.
There is only one path to freedom if they make it past the Outer Edges. They will need to find a Cutter.
Cri and Bul have escaped with their lives, and the Corporation has lost all ownership rights. Cri is a free woman. Bul is a free man.
But before they can find a home in the world, they must serve two years in the Colony, a refugee camp for escaped slaves. Bul adjusts well to their life there, but for Cri, it feels more like a penal colony than a path to freedom.